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How A Century-Old Skate Design Completely Changed Modern Speed Skating

Equipment can be a funny thing in sports, as we've seen with the ongoing Under Armor race suit debacle. But that's nothing compared to what happened in 1996, when the International Skating Union allowed skaters to begin using clap skates (or slap skates, depending on who you ask) in competitions.

Is A Crappy Under Armour Race Suit Slowing Down U.S. Speed Skating?

The U.S. has sucked something fierce in speed skating so far at Sochi. Through more than half of its races, Team USA still hasn't medaled. This is astonishing, because speed skating is traditionally one of the U.S.'s strongest winter sports. One explanation for the dip? As the Wall Street Journal first reported, it…